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Parent Forum - 6th October

On Tuesday 6th October we held our first Parent Forum. Thank you to all those that attended.

Here is an outline of what was discussed.

Majbeen Nazir discussed health and safety notices and outlined the ground rules and reasons for the forum.

Kristina Cocks explained her role within school regarding the community. She asked for feedback on possible Fit for Fun classes and what kind of classes appealed to the parents. She mentioned some of the events she currently runs and would like help with at later forums.


Viera Fajnorova explained her role as School Counsellor. She talked about the counselling she offers: Space4Me and Time2Talk and how these work. Viera spoke about the play therapy and how the play allows children to communicate their issues, concerns and worries in a safe and confidential space. Parents asked about confidentiality, ways of referrals and what would happen if information like the child was being bullied came to light. Viera explained that at the start of the session she has an agreement with each individual child and would explain to the children that the sessions are confidential unless she is concern about child safety and wellbeing then she would need to share that information with the child protection officer and relevant staff or agencies in better support of the child. Viera meets regularly with parents and teachers for review during the school year.  If you would like to know more about this service please contact Viera at the school office.


Maj explained her role in the school as Family Support Officer. She outlined some of the schemes that she has set up. This included ParentGym - the new 6 week Parenting course, the Nursery School readiness workshops, Toilet/potty training workshops, HELP Programme (supporting women who have low moods/depression, low self-esteem/confidence, DA) and talked about some of the other issues families  can be  supported  with.    There was a range of leaflets available for guidance on reducing TV time, toilet training, dummies/bottles, supporting development of S & L. 

If you would like to speak to Maj with any family/parenting concerns please contact the school office.


The forum was then open to any suggestions from Parents. They have been listed below.

Your questions

Our answers

How can you become a parent volunteer?

Information about volunteering at Christchurch can be found on the school website.

Can Parents run a lunchtime club?

Unfortunately Parents are unable to run their own clubs but are more than welcome to help support the existing clubs. For club information please see the school website.

Can Parents wait in school in the gap between the end of the day and Parents Evening?

Parent Evenings normally run until 7:00/7:30pm. Due to this we need to ensure staff have appropriate time to prepare rooms and take a short break before the evening begins.

Is there a process for informing parents if child is on the MAGT register?  Can parents make a referral?

Of course we would like parents to share their child’s talents with us. We will inform all parents when a child is added to the MAGT register. This is a priority area for the school this year and subject leaders are currently looking in to ways that we can better recognise and celebrate children’s achievements.

Is Food Technology happening throughout the school?

This is part of the school curriculum for all year groups. You can find out more about this in the curriculum section of the school website.

Can you encourage parents to bring in healthy snacks for birthdays?

We know that this is a concern for many families. We are happy for children to share a small selection of sweets or small toys with their classmates. We ask that party bags and large cakes are saved for parties outside of school. This will help the staff as it takes time out of the day to share the food. We have noticed that it can become a little competitive as to how many goodies children then bring in.

Can you provide information to families about healthy packed lunches and snacks as we are concerned about the amount of takeaway food in the playground?

The school catering company ISS will be providing food tasting at Parents Evening. We are currently in talks with them about hosting a range of events to promote healthy eating such as; a healthy eating workshop, a cooking club, use of the borough cooking bus.

Can you help us with parking around the school as it is dangerous outside the gates?

We are very aware of the parking and drop off situation outside the school. We have spoken to the council, police and a local councillor about the options to help this. The cycle scheme and widening of the pavement, as well as writing to parents and senior staff standing on the gates every morning are all initiatives we are trying to help encourage families to walk to school and leave the cars at home.

Is there still a newsletter and suggestions for parents?

We are aware of our schools environmental footprint and are trying to reduce the amount of paper we use. Whenever we send out an email or add newsletters to the website we will also send a group text to notify you. There will also be copies of letters in the main office.


Can the dates on the newsletter be in date order?

Can the calendar on the school app have times for the events added?

Thank you for letting us know. We will get this sorted out soon.

Can you tell us what our children are learning in school, especially in reception and year one?

On the school website you can find each year groups termly curriculum and suggestion of ways for parents to help at home. This should give you a better idea of what is happening in your child’s class, alongside homework. Teachers are always happy to let you know what children have been up to that week.

I think my child’s reading book is too easy, why is this?

If you have any concerns please speak to the class teacher they will be happy to discuss your concerns and the school reading schemes that we use.

Why are children talking about and playing age restricted computer games?

In the summer term we held an Internet safety meeting for parents. There is lots of information on the school website. If teachers are concerned about what games children have access to at home they will speak to individual parents. The school network has high level filters, set by Redbridge and any concerns go straight to the police through CEOPS.

Can routines for water and toilet breaks be allowed and consistent?

This is generally left to the teachers’ judgement. Children can use the toilets in class time but we encourage children to use the toilets at play and lunch to minimise the disruption of lessons. Water bottles should be accessible to children in the classroom. Water bottles should be on children’s tables in key stage two.

What are you doing about Balfour playground and the number of injuries that happen there?

Due to our now staggered lunchtime, injuries in the playground have significantly reduced. Accidents tend to happen in Melbourne playground which is why we have introduced games in that playground to encourage children to stop running into each other.

Can you speak to dinner staff as children are feeling unhappy and not enjoying their lunchtimes?

We will feedback this to the midday staff during their training and work on their communication skills with the children.

Can we have more after school clubs for all ages?

A list of clubs offered will be on the school website.

We currently have two outside agencies; Karate and Whizz kids who provide after school clubs. We will be sending out letters from PZazz; a company offering after school performing arts and creative clubs.

The Charity Fit for Fun will also be providing a free family class, parent class and children’s class in a wide range of activities. More information about this will be sent out soon.